Nvidia launches Grid 2.0 virtual desktop technology with support for 128 users per server

Nvidia headquarters in Santa Clara, Calif.

Chipmaker Nvidia today announced the launch of Grid 2.0, the latest version of its desktop virtualization technology that companies can use to deploy graphics-heavy applications remotely to employees who are offsite.

Companies can buy servers packing Nvidia Grid boards and then use virtualization software — such as VMware vSphere 6 and Horizon 6 and Citrix’s XenApp, XenDesktop, and XenServer — to share the power of GPUs (graphic processing units) with Grid 2.0.

The new release can handle as many as 128 users per server, twice as many as before, according to a statement. And Grid now supports the Linux operating system, not just Windows. Plus the technology can now run on blade servers, not just rack servers.

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Today’s release doesn’t have anything to do with Nvidia’s Grid cloud gaming products, a company spokesman told VentureBeat.

Still, it’s important for the company, as graphics virtualization is one part of Nvidia’s enterprise strategy. Nvidia also does business in gaming, high performance computing, and automotive markets.

Last year at VMworld, Nvidia announced a partnership with VMware and Google to bring better graphics performance to Chromebooks.

Grid 2.0 will become available on Sept. 15, according to the statement.

Find all of our coverage of VMworld 2015 here.

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Why the security industry needs to learn to play together

knowledge sharing

Earlier this year, President Obama held a Summit on Cybersecurity and Consumer Protection where he challenged public and private sector leaders to work together to protect American consumers and companies from the growing threat of cyberattacks. This outreach comes as several other key pieces are falling into place. Just this summer, the Congress is moving on new legislation to provide liability protection to private and public entities sharing cyber threat intelligence. Add to this the increasing adoption of new automated cyber threat sharing standards STIX and TAXII, and we have the roadmap to successfully sweep away some of the digital weeds that criminal and nation state hackers use to launch attacks that undermine our trust in the Internet.

However, President Obama correctly stated that government efforts alone will have little effect unless enterprises also step up to the challenge of sharing their cyber threat intelligence. Unfortunately, despite some notable exceptions like the Cyber Threat Alliance, organized cyber threat sharing efforts among U.S. companies to date has been sporadic. There are pockets of private sector threat sharing, but these are often focused on particular sectors (such as the financial industry) and are primarily built upon relationships among trusted partners rather than a scalable system that is required for protection throughout the ecosystem. Ironically, threat sharing within the security industry has traditionally lagged behind other sectors. This reluctance is largely due to concerns about competition and an antiquated belief that threat intelligence indicators should comprise the sole basis upon which security companies differentiate themselves. These entrenched mindsets have built barriers towards developing an infrastructure by which private and public entities can share information they’ve gleaned about cyberattacks.

I realize the idea of sharing information between security companies (many of which are direct competitors) goes against decades of competitive behavior. But to those who feel that the information they’ve learned from their own experiences with cyberattacks provides a competitive advantage, I’d say your thinking is short sighted. Here’s why.

Threat Intel Has a Short Shelf Life – As soon as an enterprise identifies and mediates one attack signature, hackers will quickly develop another one to take its place. In a rapidly changing environment like this, the value of shared threat intelligence often has a very short shelf life. So rather than keep information about a cyberattack to themselves, companies should share information with others that would benefit from it. Limiting the effective breadth of a cyberattack forces hackers to spend more time developing new attack methods and less time using established ones to steal data or disrupt business. The company your threat intel helps today may very well share the intel that helps your company stop a cyberattack tomorrow.

Your Feed’s not as Effective as You Think – The 2015 Verizon Data Breach Report notes that among feeds they studied, there was only minor overlap, meaning a customer would need access to all the feeds for any real benefit against KNOWN threats. Rather they state, “there is a need for companies to be able to apply their threat intelligence to their environment in smarter ways so that even if we cannot see inside the whole lake, we can forecast which parts of it are more likely to have a lot of fish we still haven’t caught.” The real value of threat intelligence sharing is its ability to increase the effectiveness of companies’ unique solution. As threats are exposed, sharing information about them with a continuously expanding network of companies will ensure more experts are working on finding a way to mediate a threat. And once a fix is discovered, the larger the threat intelligence network, the more quickly that fix will be implemented and further degrade the ability of cyberattackers to cause harm.

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Customers Want Action, Not an Excuse – There are fewer and fewer excuses left for security companies not sharing threat information. At the end of the day, enterprises know their future success is contingent upon providing customers with a safe, predictable user experience. Even the US Department of Justice issued guidance last year exempting the sharing of cyber threat intelligence from antitrust concerns. It’s irresponsible for companies not to take advantage of any activity that could help them better protect their customers.

Some in the security industry get this and believe it’s time to quit stalling and get to work. Palo Alto Networks, Fortinet, Intel Security, and Symantec established the Cyber Threat Alliance in order to share cyber threat intelligence for the purpose of a more cyber secure community. But these are just a few of the many companies with access to threat intelligence that could benefit the larger cyber ecosystem. I strongly encourage technology vendors, government agencies, non-profit groups, and corporations to visit http://cyberthreatalliance.org/ to learn how they can help the effort to build a safer, more reliable cyber infrastructure.

Whether or not an attack is successful depends on how ready we are to defend against it. So would you rather deal with the problem on your own, fingers crossed in the hope that your customers don’t have a bad day? Or would you rather be part of an organized network of enterprises united in the fight to stop cyberattacks, a network that includes companies who have already dealt with the attack you’re currently facing and know how to stop it?

The choice is obvious, now it’s time to act.

Davis Hake is Director of Cybersecurity Strategy at Palo Alto Networks.

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Getting Banned From The App Store Was The Best Thing That Happened To Us

banned-apps “Brace yourself, Marco…we’ve just been removed from the App Store.” With those words, I visualized everything we’d slaved over for months crumple itself into a ball of trash and — ironically — flinging itself into the bin beside me. But it hardly came as a surprise. Despite stellar traction at over 4 million users and 15 million flings opened per day… Read More

Why I just moved from Silicon Valley to Ohio

Columbus Ohio

Those who know me were no doubt surprised a few months back when I started breaking the news. I’ve lived in Silicon Valley my entire career. My wife and I have grown very involved both civically and philanthropically.

We’ve been having a blast raising our three kids in San Francisco. I love the Bay Area, and I never expected or wanted to leave. For 17 years of ups and downs, it’s been home.

And yet, here I am, at Drive Capital’s offices in sunny Columbus, Ohio, and I’m happy as hell about it.

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Three years ago, Mark Kvamme and Chris Olsen moved to Ohio and founded Drive Capital after having established world-class track records at Sequoia Capital. Most who knew them never thought they would leave either.

Drive Capital began with a simple idea: In the next 20 years, 90 percent of the market cap in technology will be built outside of Silicon Valley. What would happen if one applied a sophisticated approach to building massive companies in the Midwest? Mark and Chris raised a $250 million fund to go after this idea.

Three years later, it’s working.

The Midwest is an important, long-term driver of positive change in the world, and a driver of premier economic returns. I believe strongly enough in the power of the Midwest to transform American venture investing that I’ve pulled up my roots and made a move no one ever thought I’d make.

Entrepreneurs & Company Builders

When I moved to San Francisco 17 years ago, it was for the opportunity to be part of something new. The Internet felt like the early days of television, radio, and electricity all rolled into one.

At that time we couldn’t believe the problems that could be solved with this new technology. I wasn’t sure how to take advantage of what a web browser could do but truly felt that anything was possible, so I set off after problems to solve. I’ve always been of the opinion entrepreneurs solve a problem first and a company will get built around that, not the other way around.

In the Midwest I see and meet entrepreneurs solving real-world problems that they are passionate about. That’s how great companies get built, and that mentality is why I am here ultimately.

In contrast, elsewhere I’ve seen the “billion dollar company” mindset take over as the primary goal of a company. When you have such a high density of startups in a 7×7 mile square, you are constantly running into companies in search of a problem.

I have been spending a lot of time with entrepreneurs in cities outside the Bay Area like Minneapolis, Chicago, Columbus, Denver, Boulder, and Austin. I have become convinced more than ever that you can build great companies outside the Bay Area. In fact, I would argue that there’s a distinct advantage to doing so.

At my last company, Formation, we deliberately looked outside the Bay Area to build a world-class engineering team in Boulder, Colo. Sixty percent of that team are expats from Silicon Valley. This was mindblowing to me at the time.

Canary in the Coal Mine

There is only one Silicon Valley. There won’t be another. The place is magic.

Silicon Valley is a once-in-a-century thing, a singular innovation hub driving dramatic economic change worldwide. I’m happy that I was a part of it, but I’ve also seen that you don’t need to begin there or build there to be extraordinarily successful.

Yes, you need to be tied into the Bay Area, but today you don’t need to start in the Bay Area or even headquarter there. This is where I see huge opportunity in the startup hubs around the Midwest that I’m excited to become a part of. I want to be part of that change in these communities as it happens.

I’m also not saying that you can ignore Silicon Valley, because you can’t. I’m looking forward to working with my friends and colleagues from the Bay Area. I still encourage all companies and entrepreneurs, Midwest included, to make the pilgrimage for tradeshows, customers, networking, capital, and mentorship. I’m simply observing a pattern of great early- and late-stage companies outside of Silicon Valley, by design.

These companies are busy building first and raising capital second. The biggest successes in the Midwest aren’t financially engineered.

Half the time, it doesn’t even occur to Midwestern entrepreneurs to raise venture capital until they no longer need it. You don’t hear the constant coffee-shop talk about who is raising their next mega-round. In the Midwest, things are more straightforward. It’s all about building real businesses.

Challenges, Opportunities

Yes, it is cheaper to build and keep an elite engineering team here. And, yes, the hometown crowd welcomes startups with open arms to be first customers. But it’s not all roses and rainbows in the Midwest. I want to be clear about that too.

For one, there is a general bias to work against. What it is really like here on the ground is not always clear to people who’ve never come to visit. They’re called the flyover states for a reason. Getting more and more people to land in the Midwest is a challenge, whether for a day, a week, or forever.

Next, we need more money in the Midwest. One day Drive will have $1 billion under management, perhaps more. And that still won’t be enough. That’s the mindblowing part, and what changed my mind ultimately about the Midwest. I thought Silicon Valley had all the deal flow I’d ever need as an investor and all the talent I could every want as an entrepreneur.

I was sitting pretty, right? Nope.

When I started to look at who was interesting in the Midwest, I just about fell over. There aren’t just good companies here. There are great companies, and equally great entrepreneurs running them. And it’s not just the quality that seized me, it was the amount of white space.

A related and final challenge we face is that VCs like Drive have only a few local partners with whom to syndicate. While we love to get coastal investors involved early and often, our fund strategy nonetheless requires that we reserve more follow-on capital than is typical for each investment we make. We have to assume that we’ll lead more than one round.

We would like this to change over time. We believe very strongly in the peloton, so to speak. I look forward to the day when we have more local firms, all with the pedigree of Sequoia Capital, Benchmark, and Kleiner Perkins.

Get Your Own Drum

I still love California. My friends and I are still very close, and my kids still think of San Francisco as home. We miss their schools and the incredible community support we had there from day one.

The landscape in the Bay Area is incredible. When I woke up today, I didn’t see my usual view of the bridge, which awes me every time. We miss Fillmore Street and our favorite dive bar, Tee Off. I miss Napa too, a place dear to my heart.

But in the end, I feel that to make the biggest possible impact, I can help fill an important gap. I’m taking a long position on the Midwest, as is Drive, as are our LPs, our colleagues, our portfolio entrepreneurs, our friends, and our families. There is real change happening here, and you can feel it.

The Midwest is not just an essential part of any balanced, diversified portfolio, country-wide. There is more latent value here than anywhere else on earth — value that I believe can be methodically realized over the next 25 years.

We’ll realize that potential by partnering with those world class entrepreneurs in our own backyard and bring jobs and economic change to areas that have been overlooked. We’ll get there by working with our friends on the coasts to bring a larger perspective to Midwestern companies. And all along the way, we’ll be sure that everyone wins, proving that you can build a world-changing company anywhere.

I’ve got a new address in Columbus, Ohio. Come see us. Please come see firsthand what I’m talking about. No matter who you are, I would love to show you this incredible place and introduce you to some of the smartest, most passionate entrepreneurs in the whole world.

Andy Jenks is the newest Partner at Columbus, Ohio-based VC firm Drive Capital. Previously he was cofounder and COO of Formation Data Systems, and cofounder and GP at Stage One Capital. You can follow Andy on Twitter: @ajenks.

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Netflix will not renew its Epix movies deal at the end of September, continues shift towards exclusives

The Netflix logo is is shown on an ipad in Encinitas, California, April 19,2013. Netflix Inc reported on April 22, 2013 a first-quarter profit that beat Wall Street expectations as the dominant video rental service added new streaming subscribers in the United States. Netflix shares soared to $207.39 in after-hours trading, rising 19 percent from a close of $174.37 on Nasdaq. For January through March, Netflix recorded $19 million in net income, excluding a loss for retiring debt, and adjusted earnings per share of 31 cents. Picture taken April 19, 2013. REUTERS/Mike Blake (UNITED STATES) - RTXYW4I

Netflix today announced its agreement with the cable network Epix will not be renewed next month. That means as of September, U.S. Netflix users will lose”some high profile movies” including Hunger Games: Catching Fire, World War Z, and Transformers: Age of Extinction.

Epix, which has a joint venture for movie licenses from Paramount Pictures, Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Pictures, and Lionsgate, previously signed an exclusive streaming deal with Netflix. The exclusivity of that agreement expired in August 2012, and in September of that year Amazon signed a deal with Epix to compete more with Netflix.

If you’re a Netflix user and have no interest in getting your Epix movies from another source, the company has some advice. If you want to watch these movies, “now is the time.”

The company explains that “while many of these movies are popular, they are also widely available on cable and other subscription platforms at the same time as they are on Netflix and subject to the same drawn out licensing periods.” Netflix instead wants to focus on original films and “some innovative licensing arrangements with the movie studios” that will result in “a better movie experience” for its members.

Instead of Epix movies, Netflix chief content officer Ted Sarandos wants U.S. users to be excited about what the company has planned for the next few months:

  • In October – Beasts of No Nation, an unflinching war drama from Emmy Award winning director, Cary Fukunaga, director of True Detective, and Golden Globe winner, Idris Elba, star of Luther and Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom.
  • In December – Ridiculous Six, the first of four new comedies from Adam Sandler, will debut with an all-star cast including Terry Crews, Taylor Lautner, Rob Schneider, Jorge Garcia, Luke Wilson, Steve Buscemi, Nick Nolte, Whitney Cummings, Will Forte, Steve Zahn, David Spade, John Turturro and Harvey Keitel.
  • Also in December – Sofia Coppola directs Bill Murray in a form-bending holiday classic-to-be A Very Murray Christmas.
  • In early 2016 – the sweeping action thriller Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon: Green Legend produced by Harvey Weinstein and the latest adventure of the much adored Pee-wee Herman in Pee-wee’s Big Holiday produced by Judd Apatow.
  • We also have some great family films coming your way, including Minions, Hotel Transylvania 2, and Home through arrangements with Sony Pictures Animation, Universal Pictures and DreamWorks Animation. Starting next year, we will be the exclusive US pay TV home of the latest theatrical movies from the The Walt Disney Company, including Pixar, Lucasfilm and Marvel movies.

Netflix promises that the majority of these films will arrive “faster than traditional arrangements had previously allowed” and part of an “ever-improving catalogue.” The company also emphasized that its goal is “to provide great movies and TV series for all tastes, that are only available on Netflix.”

And that’s the real story here: Netflix has always had to strike licensing deals with various partners. As it moves to creating its own content though, it’s much more interested in such deals if they’re exclusive to its service. Epix wasn’t.

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Our Lingering Questions For Hampton Creek

15710391465_f5baf2460c_k Josh Tetrick, the charismatic founder of Hampton Creek, a food startup in Silicon Valley, bills it as one that uses science and technology to change the way the world eats. However, Tetrick has repeatedly found himself in trouble over company claims. The most recent accusation comes in the form of an official letter from the FDA that alleges Hampton Creek’s “Just Mayo”… Read More

An Insider on Switching Between Top Venture Firms — and Their Biggest Differences

Brian O'Malley_Headshot Earlier this week, we sat down with venture capitalist Brian O’Malley of Accel Partners to talk about where he’s shopping now. We also asked O’Malley — who was recruited into Accel from Battery Partners in 2013 — what it was like to transition between the heavyweight firms, and what he views as the biggest differences between them. More from that candid chat… Read More

IoT for food and water: Here’s what the future looks like

VertiCrop growing trays

In the near future, IoT will drive tremendous innovation in the way our food is grown, processed, distributed, stored, and consumed. Plants and animals will literally have a “voice.” Not a human voice, per se, but a voice based on data that can tell people, computers, and machines when, for example, they are thirsty, need more sun, require medicine, or need individual attention.

Vertical Farms

Take vertical farms, for example. These operations bring farming indoors where all of the elements required for rapid and healthy growth can be monitored and controlled. These facilities are built vertically, so growing areas can be stacked. This greatly decreases the amount of acreage needed for farming, which allows vertical farms to be located in or near cities, shortening the time needed to transport and distribute food.

From an IoT perspective, vertical farms are connected both internally and externally. Internally, small sensors in the soil or connected to individual plants tell a control system exactly how much light, water, and, nutrients are required to grow the healthiest, most productive crops. Sensors will also tell vertical farmers when crops are nearing their peak for harvesting at just the right time to ensure it’s still fresh when it reaches its final destination.

Externally, vertical farms will be connected to other networks and information systems, including databases that track local demand. For example, local restaurants could input when they need to replenish their fresh food supplies. And vertical farmers could access that information so they know which crops to grow in what quantities. Vertical farms can also connect to the power grid, using their windows as solar panels to supply the system, creating a tight feedback loop between the food supply, the power grid, and consumers. This type of IoT system would have been unimaginable a generation ago.

Green Sense Farms

Above: Green Sense Farms

Today, vertical farms are in a state of rational experimentation. And while not yet profitable, the numbers point to a bright future for the industry, especially as the world’s population continues to grow and farmland becomes more and more scarce. For example, Green Sense Farms in Chicago is able to harvest crops 26 times a year using 85 percent less energy, one-tenth the water, and no pesticides or herbicides. A side benefit of lower energy use is lower CO2 output of two tons per month, with the added benefit of creating 46 pounds of oxygen every day.

Vertical farms are also sprouting up in other countries. A vertical farm in Miyagi, Japan, built by Mirai Inc. in partnership with GE relies solely on LED lighting, requiring 40 percent less electricity compared with regular fluorescent lighting. This farm is capable of producing 10,000 heads of lettuce a day and annual sales of $2,939,736 (approximately 300 million Japanese yen).

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When we think “vertical,” most people envision something from the ground up. But vertical farms can also be underground. In the United Kingdom, a company called Growing Underground has built a subterranean urban farm 115 feet below a busy south London street uses hydroponics to grow crops free of pesticides. The farm is 1,805 square feet in size and has a carbon-neutral footprint.

Smart Produce — Informed Consumers

A recent National Geographic article, titled, “One-Third of Food Is Lost or Wasted” stated that a collective 3.5 billion acres of land, an area significantly larger than Canada, is plowed to grow food or support livestock and dairy production that no one will eat. To compound the environmental insult, food buried in the airless confines of dumps generates methane, a greenhouse gas far more potent than carbon dioxide. If global food waste were a country, it would be the third largest generator of greenhouse gases in the world behind China and the United States.

One way IoT can help decrease this waste is at the point of consumption. U.S. supermarkets lose roughly 10 percent of their fruits and vegetables to spoilage every year, according to the Department of Agriculture.

In 2012, MIT researchers unveiled a new sensor made from sheets of rolled carbon nanotubes with added copper atoms to detect tiny amounts of ethylene, a gas that promotes ripening in plants. The cost at the time of the announcement was about 25 cents per sensor. Applying Moore’s Law, those sensors will soon be cheap enough to economically place them on individual fruits and vegetables.

By detecting the gasses coming off the produce, analyzing the data, and setting alert thresholds, the sensors could keep department managers in the loop about the real-time shelf life of the store’s inventory. Managers can then decide to lower prices on produce so that it sells faster. Consumers would also know how long the fruit and vegetables they just bought will last. If we know when something will spoil, we’re more likely to use it rather than toss it into the garbage. With IoT, everyone wins, including our planet.

Even though sensor prices have not yet reached the point where it is feasible to place one on every fruit and vegetable, similar technology has been used on a larger scale to detect ethylene gas in greenhouses so that special scrubbers eliminate the gas. This lengthens the life of produce, which helps to eliminate waste. Given these advances and the cost- and size-reducing power of Moore’s Law, it’s only a matter of time before your next apple comes with a freshness sensor.

Water, Water, Everywhere …

While water rights are an extremely complicated issue, IoT can also be part of the solution for water shortages being felt in various parts of the world by providing more visibility into water usage, where globally about 70 percent of water is consumed by agriculture, more than twice that of industry at 23 percent, and dwarfing municipal use at 8 percent. As a homeowner, I receive a monthly bill that lists the number of gallons of water I used during the month. While this gives me some helpful data, it doesn’t give me enough information or insights to make intelligent decisions about my water use. I simply don’t have the adequate tools to finely control water usage on a real-time or automated basis.

Using sensors similar to the ones for vertical farming, my yard could tell me when it’s had enough water or which parts need more hydration. In combination with a remotely controllable sprinkler system, this data could be further analyzed and presented graphically on a mobile app to show the impact of my actions. For example, “By reducing water usage for your garden, you saved 8 percent of your target water usage for the month. If you keep it up, you will save $100 compared to the amount you paid last month.”

Now this is information I could use to both make better decisions and to motivate me to achieve certain goals. But, does a drop or two of water really make a difference? Consider this. If just 1 percent of the homes in the U.S. saved 1 drop of water per minute, it would equal 34,715,984 gallons per year. That is enough to water 100 acres of corn. Just imagine what we could accomplish if everyone, including farms and companies, did their part. Collectively, we would have a tremendous impact on the amount of water used while still enjoying the lifestyle we’re accustomed to.

shade ballsRecently, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) required Los Angeles to cover its water reservoir to keep the water from evaporating. One solution was to build a giant pool cover, however, the city estimated the cost to be approximately $300 million. Then, someone came up with an ingenious idea. Why not float plastic balls on the surface to protect the water underneath? After experimenting on a smaller scale, the city worked with local companies to produce millions of “shade balls” at a cost of $35 million (almost 90 percent cheaper than the alternative method). These chemically-treated black plastic balls now cover Los Angeles’ water supply, saving nearly 300 million gallons of drinkable water from evaporating each year.

Now, imagine if each ball were connected.

Solar or motion powered sensors on each ball connected via a mesh network could gather data about water quality and alert officials when algae, contaminants, acidity, and salinity for example, reach certain levels. The balls could also monitor water levels to determine more accurately how fast the finite resource is being used and replenished. Having this information in real time could help water utility operators make more informed decisions to eliminate waste. From a safety and security perspective, motion sensors could detect when someone has entered the water, either by accident or for a more nefarious reason such as contaminating the water supply, so that quick action could be taken.

Back to the Present

Because food and water are such large and important industries, it’s not surprising that several firms, from the largest technology companies to startups, are working on IoT solutions in these areas. Intel, for example, is looking to be a leader in the food and agriculture industry with projects that address water and food security, safety, and sustainability. The company is working with the Australian Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organization (CSIRO) to build tiny sensors that are placed on the backs of bees to help understand why they are dying in massive numbers around the world. Bees, of course, are of paramount importance because they pollinate approximately 33 percent of all human food sources.

Startups are also getting in on the action. Rachio adds intelligence to water usage for people’s yards. The company’s solution calibrates soil, vegetation, slope, sun exposure, and nozzle types to give customers visibility and complete control over their landscaping through a mobile app. Future products will help people manage water usage throughout their homes. Lumense is a chemical and biological sensor platform that monitors liquids and gases to provide real-time analytics and automated maintenance. The company’s focus is to make our food, water, and air supplies safer and better.

And as IoT technologies and solutions proliferate, consortia and standards bodies abound. The rapidly-growing list includes the Internet of Things Consortium, AllJoyn, Open Interconnect, Thread Group, Open Mobile Alliance, and Eclipse IoT to name a few.

IoT Demands a New Way of Thinking

We are on the planet at an incredible period of time in human history. Never before have our challenges been so great. Yet, never before has technology been so powerful. With IoT, we can literally connect anything to anything. This connectedness will require us to think in new ways if we want to use IoT to solve the challenges we face today and tomorrow. Rather than looking at a plastic ball as a singular round object, we can look at it from an IoT perspective by asking, “What could this thing do if it were connected to millions of other balls?” By training ourselves to think in this way, we’ll be to use IoT to better manage our planet including the precious resources such as food and water that we all need to survive.

David Evans is cofounder and CTO of Stringify, a startup focused on IoT. He was previously Chief Futurist of Cisco.

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New Apple TV will reportedly cost $149 or $199, ship with App Store and Siri in October

Apple TV Siri

Rumors of a new Apple TV streaming device, expected to be announced at Apple’s iPhone event on September 9, have abounded for months. Today’s latest rumor, courtesy of 9to5Mac, suggests the fourth-generation Apple TV will be priced at either $149 or $199, and will be made available in October (previous rumors said September).

The third-generation Apple TV is currently priced at $69 (recently reduced from $99), so this is a sizeable price increase. Because offering from competitors are much more affordable, Apple reportedly plans to keep selling the third-generation device alongside the fourth-generation Apple TV, which is expected to be thicker and slightly wider.

We continue to hear that the new Apple TV will include Apple’s App Store, Siri support, and a new remote control. Details on this last point are particularly interesting, as relayed by TechCrunch:

One thing that hasn’t been talked about yet is the fact that the new remote will be motion sensitive, likely including several axis’ worth of sensors that put its control on par with a Nintendo Wii remote. The possibilities, of course, are immediately evident.

A game controller with a microphone, physical buttons, a touchpad and motion sensitive controls would be extremely capable. While Apple is likely going to target the broad casual gaming market, I would not be shocked to see innovative gameplay blossom from that type of input possibility. Think, for instance, of multi-player gaming with several people using voice input, or many popular genres of party games that would do far better on the TV than on an iPad or iPhone.

Apple also has big plans for the Apple TV in 2016. The company is supposedly looking to secure the content it needs to replace the need for a cable subscription. Today’s 9to5Mac report suggests such an offering would be available for both third-generation and fourth-generation Apple TVs, priced at $40 per month.

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